Weekly Feature



2017-11-09 / Sports

EA’s Schiltz named Boys Player of the Year

by PATRICK J. NAGY Reporter


East Aurora’s Bryce Schiltz posted 28 goals and eight assists in helping the Blue Devils win the Section VI Class A overall title and finish with a 20-1 record. The 2017 All-Bee Boys Soccer Player of the Year broke the school record for career goals, finishing his four-year career with 65 tallies. 
Photo by Jason NadolinskiPurchase color photos at www.BeeNews.com East Aurora’s Bryce Schiltz posted 28 goals and eight assists in helping the Blue Devils win the Section VI Class A overall title and finish with a 20-1 record. The 2017 All-Bee Boys Soccer Player of the Year broke the school record for career goals, finishing his four-year career with 65 tallies. Photo by Jason NadolinskiPurchase color photos at www.BeeNews.com Bryce Schiltz’s first goal of his four-year high school career for East Aurora’s boys soccer team came against Iroquois in the first game of his freshman season. His ability to find the back of the net never stopped.

The 2017 All-Bee Boys Soccer Player of the Year finished his senior season with 28 goals and eight assists, and ended his career with 73 career goals, a school record.

“It’s a combination of me honing in, especially the past couple of years, on my finishing skills and burying every chance, and I also have been lucky to have played with great teammates who have given me a lot of opportunities,” said Schiltz, who was honored to be named Player of the Year.

“He’s a goal scorer,” East Aurora coach Kevin Beale said. “Ever since his freshman year we have had him in an attacking role. He’s one of our most prolific scorers.”

The previous school record of 65 goals was set by Brian Grabon from 1993 to 1996. Schiltz, who came into his senior season averaging about 15 goals per season, broke Grabon’s record in the team’s 6-0 home win over Lake Shore Oct. 10.

“That was really special to get the third goal with 11 seniors on the field,” Schiltz said. “I have been playing with those guys since I was 8 years old. I knew if I played well this season, I would have a shot at it.”

“It was his third goal of the night off an assist from Jack Bean,” Beale said. “It was our senior game and we had 11 seniors on the field when he scored. The kids were really happy for him.”

Schiltz tallied at least a point in 17 of the team’s 21 games and scored at least one goal in 16 contests. He scored game-winning goals in regular-season victories against Starpoint and Canisius and assisted the game-winning goal scored by Bean in double overtime against St. Joe’s.

Schiltz also performed well in the postseason, tallying an assist against Amherst in the Section VI Class A-2 quarterfinals, two goals versus Lewiston Porter in the semifinals, one goal and one assist against Starpoint in the A-2 final, and two goals against Grand Island in the Class A final.

The Grand Island game had a crazy ending. Trailing 4-3 with 29.7 seconds left, Pat Phillips scored the game-tying goal with 12.7 seconds left and Jack Bean scored the game-winning goal 12 minutes into overtime. It was the third section title that Schiltz had been a part of, also winning two overall Class B titles as a freshman and sophomore.

“I have never been a part of a crazier soccer game,” Schiltz said. “To get two goals in the game was special.”

East Aurora finished 12-0 in ECIC III and 20-1 overall, losing to Section V’s Pittsford Sutherland in the Class A Far West Regional.

The senior midfielder had all of the tools to have success on a soccer field. Beale called him a “miniature professional” with how he prepares for games.

“He’s a scholar of the game,” Beale said. “He’s deceptively a lot quicker than you think he is. He’s great one-one-one. He got man-marked a lot and fought that off. He’s not the biggest player but used his body to create space for shots and gave his teammates so many quality scoring chances.”

“I’m not one of the guys who prepares for games by being loose or joking around,” Schiltz said. “Once I get on the field, it’s all business.”

A team captain, Schiltz led more with his play on the field than his words.

“Bryce is not a rah-rah guy and led more by example,” Beale said. “The team has been looking up to him ever since he was a little guy. Bryce handled the expectations put upon him as well as anyone. He was willing to take it all on. Not many kids can do that.”

Schiltz, who plays club soccer for F.C. Buffalo Academy, has verbally committed to play at the University of Scranton, a Division III school in Pennsylvania.

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